Fractured left pleural catheter

Case contributed by Assoc Prof Craig Hacking


Left pleuritic chest pain. 4 weeks post admission for pneumonia and pleural effusion.

Patient Data

Age: 85 years
Gender: Male

WIthin the left midzone is a retained horizontal fragment of catheter tubing. No residual pleural effusion. Chronic interstitial thickening is longstanding. Cardiomegaly. Evidence of prior CABG.

Annotated image

Annotated position of the retained segment of pleural catheter tubing.

Case Discussion

The patient had a LLL pneumonia (CXRs not available) requiring IV antibiotics a month earlier complicated by a moderate-sized left pleural effusion. The effusion was treated with a pleural catheter (aspirate was sterile serous fluid) and the catheter was inadvertently dislodged overnight 3 days after insertion when the patient was delirious. The catheter was thrown away without inspection by the night staff.

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Case information

rID: 71654
Published: 16th Oct 2019
Last edited: 25th Jan 2020
System: Chest
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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